Why Does Bringing Awareness to & Talking About Mental illness Matter To Me?

Well over two months ago, Awarecause reached out to me and asked if I would be interested in sharing my story for a cause that was important to me. I was really surprised that they reached out to me and also really excited to take part.

I agreed to share and they sent me a promo code to purchase a necklace at a discounted price and I got it two days later. I wear my #Awarecause necklace nearly every day and as I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately, I thought I’d share a longer post about it.

I was originally going to pick a pink AWARE necklace for two women in my life that I have lost to breast cancer and talk about them, but as it was meant to be a personal “your story,” I decided to purchase the mental illness AWARE necklace instead. Just that category alone is compacted with so many different variables, but I try to stick to the two that have affected me throughout my life and I hope other readers are able to connect with it as well.

I see my story as being very interconnected with so many different points of my life that it is kind of hard to pinpoint just one thing that I associate with the importance of mental illness. As a detail-oriented person and essentially a type-A personality, I am known to others as being a self-starter and so internally driven that not much of anything will leave a dent or cause me, for even a second, to slow down.

But that’s not the case—I do not think that it can be like that with anyone, ever. I am the oldest in my family, so on top of natural pressure that leaves on me to work hard, be a role model and this spearheaded, pristine example, I face my ups and my downs.

What most people may not know about me is that every day I live/fight with and adjust to a physical disability that I was born with. I can walk but my disability has its limitations, and sometimes I have worse days than others to simply make it downstairs to walk my dog but I power through it. Keeping my mental state stronger, more determined, committed and progressive over my legs and body being in so pain and discomfort that I can’t really move around is a constant struggle.

All my life it has caused me to go through such overwhelming bouts of anxiety and depression, especially when I was younger and in school. Seen as the petite girl who walked funny or was occasionally walking half the day and in a wheelchair for the rest. While I know that being handicap(able) will always have its ups and down, I also know that it shouldn’t and cannot prevent me from doing everything I set my mind on.

But not every day has been filled with unwavering gumption, assurance, and confidence. Even though I am older now, those thoughts and feelings can still weigh on my mind. I’m more fortunate than others who lose that fight every day which is another reason why I think it’s important to continue to raise awareness and bring attention to anxiety, depression, and all other forms of mental illness.

Thank you so much for stopping by and viewing this post. And huge thank you to Awarecause for reaching out and asking me to share.

 

 

 

Until the next post,
Gia J

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Diverse Books, Social Justice & Intersectional Feminism | My Semi-Set 2017TBR List

semi-set-reading-list-2017

Happy Friday, fellow readers:

This is will be a short, update post on things I’ll try to cover, share and just discus on the blog this year.  After going back and forth over a list of topics, authors, genres and overall information I’ve been wanting to really submerge myself in with this new year, I decided to just put together a semi-set TBR list for the year.

One that showed specific authors’ works I wanted to read this year; my desire to read more books by female authors, my goal to read more work written by women from around the word that have been translated (WIT) on top of a personal desire to incorporate (generate) more discussion and content on my blog in regards to intersectional feminism and social justice. 

I had a full page and a half of books I looked up to check out when I found the Social Justice Book Club in the beginning of January, and I was convinced I was using up some sort of luck I had stored over the years when Bina from Wocreads created a post about her desire to create a non-fiction based diverse study group. Now when I said I screamed, I screamed! I freaked (then angered) my entire family, but it was worth it. ^_^ And now is definitely the time for the select books and reading material that’s already been lined up. 

As the year progresses, this list may (and by that I mean will) grow. I’m trying to keep an order with the list but I don’t really see myself sticking to the order I set now because I usually go for material that peaks an interest in the moment.  I do have books I have chosen to read around certain parts of the year, but like I said things can and will change.

This list below will not include material for Social Justice book club or the Diverse Study Group material but might reflect similar materials.

G. Jacks TBR 2017 Book List
And in keeping up with my attempt to fill my personal book shelf with not only non-fiction books, intersectional feminism books and books that bring even broader level of cultural content that I am both familiar and not familiar with in works of fiction and non-fiction. I will attempt to read larger portions of work by select authors. This list I’ve compiled thus far is short but just the same, I feel it’s a good place to start.
1) Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
2) Toni Morrison
3) James Baldwin
4) Audre Lorde
5) Alice Walker
6) Julia Alvarez
7) Mayra Santos Febres
8) JhumpaLahiri
Thank you so much for reading and checking out this semi-permanent TBR list for 2017. Have any suggestions for more books or authors? I’d love to hear them. If you’re interested in either the book club or group that I mentioned here today, I highly recommend that you check them out. ^_^
divstgrsocial2bjustice2bbook2bclub
 Until the next post,
Gia.

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End Of The Year: 2016 Wrap Up Post

Another year comes to a close. 2016 threw quite a few punches my way that I wasn’t expecting, both professionally and personally. Some of the good, like my dotsons Willow & Chase, and some not so great.

 

Me, Tay with Willow & Chase

My sister and I with Willow & Chase on Christmas 2016 ^_^

As it were, like many other people, I’ll be teetering into 2017 with one eye open and not with a complete full-stop attitude. While I did not check off as many book goals or writing goal that I originally planned to this year, I am very happy with what I have accomplished.

DIversity Reading Challenges Banner Stiched 2016 for blog posts
Hard to say how I did with these two. I originally pledged a  4th Shelf: 19-24 books level on my post here,  with a list of 10 subsidiaries books with specific guidelines.  I was only able to read 5 categories out of those 10.  These are just a few of those:
diverse-two diversity-one

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A Writer’s Update: A Month Away (Give Or Take Several Days)

Hiya,

So, I had decided to take some time off, sort of speak for the month of November to rethink a few things, make some outlines, make a few lists and just a general plan for the next few months now that I’m not in the safe, cozy and familiar isolation that was my solitude.

I think it would be tactful to go without mentioning though that the break was much needed in the sense that I was sort of grappling with that reoccurring feeling of being spun around in this uncreative void. This break was not only on my blog, but it was also on all of my social media platforms, and it even included a slight step back from interacting with a few of my friends on occasion because I felt so incredibly and embarrassingly lazy.

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A Blogger Update: Wow, It’s Been A Looong Time

Hey There:

So, I’ve moved a lot in the past six and a half years, but none of those experiences were enough to prepare me for last month’s move. 😐 Not only did I have to pack and split up all of my stuff for two different destinations (and make multiple trips over the course of three days). Not to mention settling in with a new dog whose internal setting seems to be permanently notched at crazy and wild. Whatsmore, following the move, I unfortunately was put in a position where I simply didn’t have the space or time to sit down and enjoy the books I put aside and planned to read for August.

I was so stressed and upset that I didn’t have time to read that when I was finally able to sit down and dive into the stack my stack of books, I found that I really only wanted to immediately get started with certain ones. It was in that moment that I realized it was time to stop doing the #2016TBRpile reading challenge and the #2016audiobookchallenge. While I enjoyed finally getting to that large stack of books that have been just sitting on my shelf, not all of the books were making me particularly giddy or excited to get through them.

Not like the books I’ve read for the tours I’ve been apart of or the books authors have actually reached out to me with and asked for a review.  And reading should be fun. It is fun! Reading the material and books that only I want to was the main reason I began book blogging in the first place and I’d like to get back to that feeling of excitement and thrill of sharing great stories and authors with all you lovely people ^–^.

Of the books I’ve read/started that I’ve enjoyed and had so much fun getting into in August were:

Not Your Sidekick by CB Lee (upcoming tour book)

Does My Head Look Big In This? by: Randa Abdel Fattah

True Colors Of Betrayal by: JC Kang ( Book #3 of Daughter of The Dragon Throne) Even though I’m only over the half way mark with it, I think this might be my favorite of the series. It’s soo good.

The Salarian Desert Series by: J. A. McLachlan

The Yard by: Aliyyah Eniath (upcoming tour book)

Just to name a few. I’ve also read a few kids books with my cousin now that school has started back up, but I don’t really think that they count for this particular list. 🙂

All in all,  Willow and I are finally feeling more settled and I’m already starting to feel like my natural, reader self ^__^ Let the wave of book reviews commence!

Thanks so much for reading and sticking around with me.

Until the next post (very soon),

Gia.

A Writer’s Update: Concerts, Book Reviews, New Stories & Birthdays! Oh, My!

Hiya,

Did the post title grab your attention?? Good. ^__^ So this is just a quick update post. There will be a massive amount of reviews going live in the next few weeks, due to a backlog of notes that took a while to type up. Also because of a few book promos scheduled for this month on top of a few things that will keep me away from my computer for a little while.

Like the Penny & Sparrow concert I’m going to this Friday at World Café!! 🙂 I AM SO EXCITED FOR THIS SHOW, GUYS. Just a few words aren’t enough to convey how ecstatic I am about this show. I absolutely love them <3. I’ll be sure to post pictures on me instagram for everyone to see, so if you aren’t following me yet, I suggest you hop to it 😀

Back to the topic at hand, since my birthday is at the beginning of May, I will try to have my Reading Challenge update post up as soon as possible, but since I’m not sure if I will be surprised with anything by the fam, I can’t say that anything is set in stone.

I also wanted to mention that a few days ago, inspiration struck for a new mini-flash fiction series (YAY!) and I’ve been inspired to write new material for my Protector series as well (DOUBLE YAY!).

Unlike the Protector series, this new one is a five-part serial drama titled, Balloons with a handful (4-5) main characters who will be between the ages of 7-13 years old. I plan on using Medium for this series as well but I might switch it up and have parts of them posted here as well. At the moment, I’m still just working on the story structure.

Balloons will have bits of a few different genres, paranormal, thriller, comedy and drama, so stay tuned guys and stay classy. ^__^

P.S. If you haven’t done so already, be sure to check out my latest review post for That Thing Between Eli & Gwen. It was such a great book :-).

Thanks so much for reading!

Until next time,

Gia.

 

I Don’t Feel Like Writing Because….(A Writers Write Prompt)

I Don’t Feel Like Writing Because… (A Writers Write Prompt)

Because I don’t want you to see me fumble for my words when I (try to) describe something I love or find totally and completely awesome and I just want you to fall in love as much as I have.

Because no matter how many times I practice it, memorize it or look it up, I will always spell the word “*insert any word ever* “ wrong.

Because I have a love/hate relationship with commas, the listing comma in particular, but I think anyone could understand that.

Because for some odd reason my brain always likes to randomly include “Subsequently” in every other paragraph I write when discussing something, even though it never fits.

Because as much as I love/know about writing, story and characters, there are a million and one things I still want and need to learn, so I don’t often want to drudge on and on with my opinion when I could be spending my time learning something new. (Might be the worst one)

Because I prefer to hand-write my thoughts before typing them up—this prompt not excluded—but when your notes are three pages long (front and back) well…

Because 99% of writing is intimate, regardless of what I am writing, these words are an extension of my mind, my thoughts, my perspective, my opinions, and me. What if someone doesn’t like what I have to say? What if they find my short stories and advice naïvely tedious, cumbersome, and subsequently lame?

Because sharing it with anyone has and always will be painstakingly nerve racking, but I am always happy when I do share.

 

Thanks so much for reading. 🙂

Until next time,

Gia.

A Writer's Update

A Writer’s Update – Long Time, No Write

Hello Readers,

I must admit that I did not imagine getting back to my posts or my Writer Updates would take quite this long. I was unfortunately recovering from an accident back in June and before I knew it I was drowning work projects and just trying to catch up with myself at one point.

Really bummed that I was not able to complete and upload my final Orphan Black episode review when it aired :-/ I still have my notes however and I will complete that series of reviews. The same goes for my Daredevil reviews. If it weren’t for buffer, I don’t even think my tweets would have stayed so current.

In case you do not remember, I did a post like forever ago about not letting the outside world steal you away from your Writers’ Realm and boy was I not only snatched away, I was deflected; still trying to figure out the direction I should be heading in next.

I’ve been fortunate enough to have quite a few books to throw myself into over the summer and they’ve been great at guiding me towards a new re-charged and motivated mode. So, that’s the reason for the new review addition to the site, also who doesn’t enjoy a good book review or recommendation every once and a while, amiright? 😉

My taste for a good solid book floats all over the board, so expect a wide range in material with the book reviews.

In addition, I have a number of new pieces for my Protector Series that need to be edited and dressed up a bit with specific banners/covers for each story. So, expect to see more of that soon.

As you will see below, I will try to promote & share interesting webisodes, cool music, or pieces of art that I come across for you guys as a bout of inspiration boost. I believe it’s important that we always laugh, love, think, learn and inspire one another in life. And sharing–as they say–is caring ^__^.  And I am happy that I’ve been fortunate enough to come across a few good things to share lately 🙂

Last, but certainly not least on my list of updates, is I will be introducing a Character Study portion to my site in late Autumn/ Early Winter. This addition will not be limited to shows and characters in the US only. I intend for it to be worldwide, as to introduce and spread the word about memorable and unique characters and shows that deserve a bit of attention.

This weekend’s promote & share is a Comedy Web Series written by Paul Carganilla, Jared White, & Stephen Young titled Winners.

Short synopsis of the show: It’s a group of ‘artists’ who lived together with their manager in his house trying to make it in Hollywood.

More info can be found on their Facebook page & the show’s website here. If you like it too, then please go and check it out. I’ve watched these episodes a zillion times ^__^.

NOTE: I do not know these people at all, I just enjoy their work and this is strictly an appreciation post from fan.

And, without further ramblings, I give you Winners 🙂

Thanks for reading & Happy Saturday. Until next time,

Gia.